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Cablegate: Turkey: Pol-Mil Round-Up, January 2007

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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 000379

SIPDIS


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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: MASS MARR PREL LE GR UP IS AJ TU
SUBJECT: TURKEY: POL-MIL ROUND-UP, January 2007


(Note: This is one of a regular series of unclassified reports on
significant Turkish defense and national security issues in the
press and other open sources. End note.)

Contents
--------

-- Turkish Parliament Ratifies EXBS Agreement
-- Budget Share for Defense Reduced by 6.4%
-- Plane Carrying Turkish Workers Crashed in Iraq
-- Turkey's Security Relations with Other Countries
-- Defense Industry Activity


Turkish Parliament Ratifies EXBS Agreement
-------------------------------------------

1. The Turkish Parliament ratified on January 24 the Bilateral
Agreement on Cooperation to Facilitate the Provision of Assistance
for Nonproliferation Purposes (EXBS), which was originally signed on
June 14, 2005. The agreement, which was ratified despite the
objection of the CHP (Republican Peoples' Party) opposition party,
foresees supporting Turkey's efforts to enhance its national export
control system, law enforcement, and border security to prevent,
deter, detect and interdict illicit trafficking of WMD, missile
delivery systems and related dual-use commodities and technology.

Budget Share for Defense Reduced to 6.4%
----------------------------------------

2. The budget allocated to the Turkish Defense Ministry for the
needs of Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) dropped to 6.4% of the General
Budget, and 2-2.5% of the Gross National Product. The defensom 10.5% to 6.4% of the. Accordxh@ane Carrying Turkish Work-----------------------w, aboard a
Moldovan-registered aircraft traveling from Adana, Turkey to Balad,
Iraq were reported killed on January 9 when the aircraft crashed
while trying to land in foggy conditions outside of Balad. The
Turkish Foreign Ministry announced that there were 29 Turkish and 1
U.S. passengers aboard, in addition to 4 foreign crew members.
Turkish newspapers speculated that the plane might have been brought
down. The sole survivor of the incident, a Turkish national, was
brought back to Turkey following medical treatment in Iraq.

Turkey's Security Relations with Other Countries
--------------------------------------------- ---

4. Lebanon: On January 3 PM Tayyip Erdogan visited the Turkish Corps
of Engineers assigned to UNIFIL in Sur, Lebanon. He was briefed on
the troop deployment under the United Nations Interim Force in
Lebanon (UNIFIL), according to ANA.

5. Greece: Turkish media reported that Turkish F-16 jets were
intercepted five times by Greek military jets on January 8 while
flying in international airspace over the Aegean Sea. Responding to
journalists' questions on the issue a few days after the
'harassment' incident, Turkish Chief of General Staff (CHOD) Gen
Yasar Buyukanit said that, despite this, the two militaries maintain
good relations. (Turkish Daily News)

6. Ukraine: CHOD Buyukanit met his Ukrainian counterpart Gen Serguy
Kiricenko in Ankara on January 15. No information on the subject of
their meeting was made public. Turkish and Ukrainian Naval Forces
signed on January 17 a protocol to exchange information and
cooperation within the scope of Operation Black Sea Harmony.
(Turkish Daily News)

7. Israel: Israeli Police Chief Moshe Karadi met his Turkish
counterpart on January 18 in Ankara. No information about the
subject of their meeting was made public. (ANA)

ANKARA 00000379 002 OF 002

8. Azerbaijan: Turkish media reported that the Azerbaijani
government was planning to assign a Turkish general officer as its
Deputy Defense Minister. The Turkish general is expected to resume
the post in mid-2007 and to hold the duty until 2011. Several
dailies wrote that the assignment was similar to the assignment of a
retired American colonel as CHOD in Lithuania in 2002. (Note: The
Turkish MFA claimed no knowledge of any such arrangement and
suggested that perhaps a general officer will be assigned to advise
the Azerbaijani defense ministry on a temporary basis. End
note.)(moderate pro-Islamic Zaman and moderate pro-Islamic Cihan
News Agency)

Defense Industry Activity
-------------------------

9. The Defense Industry Undersecretariat (SSM) announced an RFP
(Request for Proposal) for the acquisition of 80 Medium Range
Anti-Tank Weapon Systems (MRAWSs), 10 missiles per unit (total 800
missiles), tripods, related containers and accessories. The
deadline for the RFP is April 30.

10. SSM issued a tender for new submarines on January 31. 26
Turkish and foreign companies joined the tender: Amaris from France,
Tubitak-MAM, Aydin Yazilim, Elektronik Sanayi A.S. from Turkey,
Konsberg Defence-Aerospace-Naval Systems from Norway, Kollmorgen
Corporation-Electro Optical Division from the US, Calzoni Sr. 1-
Submarine Systems Department from Italy, BMT Defence Services
Limited from Britain, Howaldstwerke-Deutsche Werft GmbH from
Germany, Navania from Spain, Aselsan and Roketsan from Turkey, and
Tr-Elbit System from Israel.

11. TAI-TUSAS signed a contract with Jordanian Air Forces for the
modernization of Jordanian F-16 jets. The first F-16 jet will be
modernized in October 2007. 12 planes will be renovated in TAI
facilities and five others will be modernized in Jordan under the
supervision of TAI engineers. The Modernization of 17 F-16 jets
will be completed in 41 months.

12. Turkish Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul signed on January 25 a
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Turkey's participation in the
production the Joint Strike Fighter (F-35) aircraft. DM Gonul's
signature on the MOU in Washington covered a potential initial
purchase of 100 F-35s.

13. SSM signed on January 31 a project to develop a radar and
communications jamming and deception simulator with Turkish Vestel
Defense Industries Corp. The project, worth 25 million euro, is to
be completed in four years.


WILSON

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